After spending 185 days on the sidelines with injury, Marco Reus was back with a vengeance on Tuesday, scoring a hat-trick as Borussia Dortmund beat Legia Warszawa 8-4 in a record UEFA Champions League rout. bundesliga.com caught up with the resurgent Reus after the final whistle…
Question: Marco Reus, you have a ball under your arm - is that a souvenir from this spectacular evening?
Marco Reus: Yes, that's the match ball. I still have to get signatures from all of the guys, and then the ball can take pride of place in my house.
Question: Was this hat-trick on your comeback the reward for your hard work during your injury lay-off?
Reus: Even if I had not scored a goal, I would have just been glad that I was finally back playing. So it was, of course, doubly and triply beautiful that I scored and could help the team. In the end, the team must have success - that's all there is to it.
Watch: Marco Reus: FIFA 17 cover star:
Question: How did it feel to be back on the pitch?
Reus: If you are out for so long, it's always something special to come back. I have been looking forward to this moment and have worked very hard for it. It feels all the more beautiful when you win and score yourself.
Question: How difficult was it to be patient during your absence? And how long does it take to trust your touch and technique again?
Reus: That trust was there right from the start. If it wasn’t, I wouldn’t have played against Warsaw. But for me there is no point talking about the past now. I cannot change that anyway. I can make decisive contributions in the here and now and help the team. So it was not hard psychologically, either. I was just happy to be back. And I knew I was 100 per cent fit.
Question: You played for 90 minutes. Was that planned?
Reus: I've been training a lot lately, so I've made some ground. But it was already clear that from the 70th minute it would be more difficult if you have been out for half a year. But I felt quite good and I paced myself quite well. Everything is alright.
Question: Are you already physically fit enough to look ahead to the coming games?
Reus: I feel 100 per cent injury-free, but to get back to full match fitness still takes a little bit of time, of course. I will certainly need some games. We now have six games until the winter break. Let's see how many more I can then play in. We have an extremely difficult program ahead of us against strong opponents. We have to play consistently. And we have to win.
Question: This was a clear win for BVB, but Warsaw still scored four times…
Reus: We did not defend well as a whole team. That must be addressed in any case. This will be discussed. Four goals against at home - that is clearly too much.
Question: BVB now only need a draw against Real Madrid in the final game to win the group. How optimistic are you?
Reus: First of all, before the game in Madrid, we have two difficult games in the Bundesliga in Frankfurt and against Gladbach. And then we are looking forward to the game at Real because it is a real cup final for the group win. But we will not play for a draw at all - we always want to win. And I am sure that we will definitely defend better there than we did against Legia.
Reus was speaking to Dietmar Nolte